We Drink Inspiration – Poetry Prompt #008: Poetry

A Tanka Series for Sahm King

My Favorite Form

lights yellow haloed
whimsical should be the morn
yet that silent shroud
implodes upon my ear-drums
creating a somber song

morning concert fog
drip drip after cold wet drop
think I’ll go to bed
my hair will frizz in this mess
besides I still have a cough

what a lousy mess
could cut the gunk with a knife
by my life! oh dear
a bit hyperbolic, yes…
and not even a good rhyme

so my dear Sahm King
I wrote this series for you
the tanka is my thing
a haiku or a choka
or sedoka are fine too

on this Friday morn
all foggy and glum and wet
looking at your prompt
the words flowed along like this
so I’ve sent them off thus so

We Drink Inspiration – Poetry Prompt #007: A New Year

Quatrain

2014

The year that’s born will bring to us…
New jobs and hopefully less fuss
A stronger will to make things work
(I hope Congress is less the jerk.)

Well, as you see I can still dream…
Though I know there’s no magic stream
From which we may fish jobs and wealth
Or an economy full of health.

For: We Drink Because We’re Poets

 

Just a Note: December 23, 2013

Hello World!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The winter solstice has happened…whether you put it at the 21st or the 22nd it has come about.  The Longest Night of the Year has just passed us by and the new cycle has begun!  Of course, we still have to get through three months of cold, ice, fog and all that jazz, unless, like Leanne Cole or Summerstommy some of you live in the land down under!  So, for me it’s kind of like New Year’s Day and so I’m going to try to thank at least some of you for a wonder year!

Most will be reading this in my tomorrow, some will perhaps read it in my yesterday, like Eric Alagan or Canadian Travelbugs (which reminds me I have a photo prompt to do!) in China!  Some will be reading from England like Barb Taub, who was one of my first readers actually and the lady that introduced me to AWARDS…but I still love her.  Some may pop in from Florida, like dear Cranky, another of my first readers and award givers.  These two ladies have been ever so busy lately…publishing and an added feature for Cranky studying, as she’s gone back to college!  One of the great bloggers I met in this period was OM for whom I wrote a haiku, I think it was, and learnt how to ping by accident 😉 and Christian Mihai.  Two of WordPress comets who’ve since flown high in the sky of blogosphere!

I got “into” poetry around the middle of March. Thanks to Sahm King from whom I learnt about Papizilla (then with We Drink Because We’re Poets), Charles from Windemere fame, King Midget, Lilith Colbert, MT Blu and many, many others who came later, who soared in my life and mind, sometimes briefly sometimes intensely, always leaving something of their passing.

I also became interested in Haiku (this was my first haiku) and followed Betty Generic’s year-long effort to write a Haiku a Day looking out her bedroom window! Haiga thanks first of all to Sahm and then Rick Daddrio and Wabi Sabi and Haibun through the Ligo Haibun Challenge and Ese’s Voice.   I wrote power shorts, short fiction, and 100 words a week for the Friday FictioneersThe Trifecta (which I seem to have missed last week…hmmm) and The Speakeasy people, and – and – and….I could go on and on.  So many to thank so many who stimulated me.  I can’t even begin to thank some of you for whom I’ve written over the Poem a Day Month back in October and other random blogs I chanced upon and for whom I felt inspired to write.  Go through the blog by category or date if you like.  I always mention who inspired me…except once…that Bltz Poem still haunts me!

Thanks to the Daily Post:  Weekly Photo Challenge (the star up at the top of the blog is for you), I came across such lovely blogs and blogger’s like: What’s in a Picture, Chronicles of a Public Transit User, Patchwork Ponderings , Frizztext and so many more I really can’t link you all…

I’ve written posts for We Drink Because We’re Poets, Poet’s Corner, 13th Floor Pardigm, We Poets Show It and a Paperbook Collective (and maybe for something or someone else that I’ve forgotten).  Wow…I’ve been a busy beaver folks!  Many of you have followed through poetry many other’s photography…and some of you liked my stories.  You’ve all been very supportive in one way or another and it’s been a pleasure to have met you, blogged with you, chatted with you (a special thanks to The Dragon Don for a great talk about computers by the way…still fighting with Ubuntu, but may try Mint in the not too distant future!)

So in the end…this is a lot of ramble… I haven’t mentioned even a fourth of the people who have had an influence on my life, like T.J.Therien (who often inspired me to try different poetry form, like the Ghazal, Sonnet, Kyreille Sonnet etc), Running Son, Belinda, Traces of Soul, My dearest Cubby of Reowr, Oloriel, Ye Olde Foole, Idiot Writing, Rarasaur, HA who is now Anmol, Sun, Al, Nerd on a Bridge, Lexborgia, Words of Birds and heaven forgive me and you if I haven’t written your name!  I now follow 476 blogs (whom I sometimes have to refollow because they disappear) and am followed by a little over 900 people thanks to my two blogs and my Facebook link to the blog (don’t know about Goggle + etc.) no big time blogger but I feel that’s a pretty respectable following after nearly a year of blogging.

But here I really have to mention a blog which very few of you have ever heard of.  It’s administered by a formidable Italian lady of a very fine intellectual cut, her name is Elena…and she blogs at Elena e Orlando if it hadn’t been for this dear friend, I wouldn’t be blogging at all.  It was upon her instigation that I created Bastet and Sekhmet last January.  If you like the blog thank her…if you don’t blame me.

I better go and write something interesting!

You all have a wonderful holiday: serene, peaceful and safe…A hug to you all.

and when all is said and done
whether I’ve mentioned you
or what you’ve done
the memories of a year together
writing and reading
laughing and crying
may all just be an ephimeral moment
of cyberspace and loneliness
I’ve loved some of you to heartbreak
and other’s have been my muse
the point of all this is just to say
that I’m happy I’ve met you
and look throughout the day
to find you and read what you’ve got to say.

Oh well…you know what I mean 😉

Ciao!

Gifts of Gif!

The other day MT Blu sent me a note…asking if I’d send her 5 photos as she wanted to make me a GIF.  Of course, I sent her 10 photos of two different scenes!  I wasn’t sure what she needed or how a Gif works.

MT Blu besides keeping the We Drink Because We’re Poets Facebook page up and running and I might add very popular, does a great daily post over at We Drink Because We’re Poets…she gives us interesting quotes by famous people and illustrates them.  They are very often whimsical sometimes funny, sometimes very serious and always thought-provoking! If you’ve been following my blog, you’ll have seen me reblog them often…in fact I’ve been smitten by her quotes!

But let me get back to the gif:

It all began the day that Blu posted this fantastical whimsy about Poe:

286Believe only half of what you see and nothing that you hear.

I just had to laugh and reblog.  She answered one of my comments (I wasn’t sure if this was a film or what!) which I didn’t see:

As for you wondering if it’s a video, well it’s called a gif (graphics interchange format). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphics_Interchange_Format
Here’s a pretty nifty link if you want to create some…
http://www.myspacegens.com/handler.php?gen=animatedimage

Then I got the message asking for the photos.  On another post she sent me the results of the poor photos I’d sent along to her…but with a great explanation of how to photograph for a gif!

Your gif may contain as many photos as you wish. The idea is to take each picture (for example of the same object) at a different angle to create a continuous image (http://25.media.tumblr.com/1457f213febc8303f5fffeaeb9d2394d/tumblr_mlvx0o6nLN1r2pr83o1_400.gif). Think of the position of your feet like the hands of a clock, for example you start at 11:50, then 11:51, 11:52, 11:53, 11:54, 11:55, 11:56. 11:57. 11:58, 11:50, 12:00. With this many photos and at those angles, you’ll create a flowing gif.

And an invitation to send another set to The We Drink Because We’re Poets Facebook message service!  Which I will do asap.

In the meantime folks have a look at what Blu can do even with so-so photos!

This is my Christmas tree taken at 4:30 in the morning:

bastet-1And these are in front of my favorite pub:  Il Gatto Nero (The Black Cat)…just going towards the door:

bastet-2and here  l’m coming and going!

bastet-4(Thanks ever so much Blu for this fantastic gift of gifs!)  I don’t know why, and if someone will please give me the info I’ll be forever grateful, but to get these gif to dance, you’ve got to click them.  They work fine in my editor…but they don’t dance once published.  This happened yesterday as well.

Have fun people!  Maybe you’d like to try your hand at making your own gifs…I know that I will have to have a go in the not too distant future, this is just too tempting!  So, thanks to MT Blu at We Drink Because We’re Poets for another interesting way to create!

Ciao, Bastet!

Free Verse: Trial and Tribulation

Free Verse

Of trial and tribulation
I could write for you an ode
about the crazy nation
I live in and call abode…

If I were to think of trouble
I’d reflect upon the Fall
seems that all my problems double
when the cold begins to call…

I’m usually calm and collected
I don’t really get too upset
until someone decides I should be corrected
in my views as a neo suffragette.

My problems they are many
I’m getting old and achy
I don’t sleep too very much
and I sometimes get depressed.

My husband has his problems
nothing wrong with that
except he’s the type of person
who needs a beating post.

My sons are far away
My Mom fell down in the U.S.A.
and though I’d like to visit them
I just can’t get away.

I like to read and write
and I’d do it all day long
until my hubby huffs and moans
about the hours I’m “gone”.

I fall in love with people
that I’ve never ever seen
and when they disappear
I’m sad for weeks on end.

My car won’t work in winter,
my ears drums they have swollen
my back bone is a mess
my knees crunch and groan.

All this begins in the Fall
Everything just seems to get so dark
But there is a mercy somewhere
I’m sure I can find the light.

When winter finally shows its head
my mood starts to move upwards
It’s the feasting of the lights and trees
that gives me a charge of good cheer.

By the coming of the New Year
I’ve forgotten all my troubles
oh…everything is still there
my emotions have just moved on.

For: We Drink Because We are Poets Poetry prompt # 5

N.B. if this prompt had come say two weeks ago, the poem would be different and more somber…but my mood has taken an upward swing and I can’t get into the emotions tied to the trials and tribulations of those last few weeks.

WE DRINK INSPIRATION – SHORT STORY PROMPT #004

“Ah…what is this, one of your more recent vagaries dear Natuatl?”

“Not at all…as I was walking through the forest, I heard a gentle whipery sound among the trees…a psithurism. It could have been my lord Quetzalcoatl!”

“Listen we have no time now for your adodyopsis with Quetzalcoatl!  I know you have a terrible case of  basorexia for him, but we’ve really got a lot to do this afternoon!  Stop being so dreamy-eyed and get the sacred tools ready.”

The crowd gathered before the great temple of Quetzalcoatl.  The high priest and his two handmaidens moved solemnly towards the sacrificial stone in the middle of the platform.  Two young women and a young man were brought towards the stone.  Natuatl gave the priest the bronze knife, smiling, imagining how happy her Lord
Quetzalcoatl would be today.

Written for Lilith

We Drink Inspiration – 24 Hours: The Dream

The Dream

The angel came to visit Marion in her dreams.  Black wings and all…death dressed in a beautiful shimmering black robe, and as I said with black wings too.

“Marion!  I’ve come to inform you, that today will be your last day on Earth.  You’ve 24 hours to make peace with the world, then you will be coming away with me!”

She awoke with a start.  Marion was a prolific dreamer.  One of those persons who remembers just about everything they dream and she used them to write her poetry and stories.

The first thing she did that day, was in fact write a poem about her experience.

black wings and silk gown
she came to visit last night
angel of my death

She also wrote a short story, than she called her son and they talked for an hour, and she said, “just in case, this is my Blog’s password, put my poems and stories in order and publish them if you find something worthwhile”.

The Skype lit up with it bi bo bi…and so she talked to her Sister who happened to be at her Mom’s house.  They had a good laugh about the dream and talked about her trip home for spring.

Her two older sons delighted her too with an early call.  They were usually only available on the week ends.  She also talked to her grandkids who were home for Christmas break.

She went for a walk and stopped by her favorite café where she met up with a couple of her friends who’d stopped by fortuitously.  She then took out her camera and took some photos that she thought might go nicely for a couple of photo challenges she wanted to participate in.

When she got home, it was still pretty early in the day.  So she elaborated the photos then posted them.

Her husband got up around 11:00 that morning, later than usual.  They had hot brioche and cappuccino for breakfast and then decided to go for a drive down to the lake to take advantage of the bright sunny day.  It was interesting to see all those people she’d missed seeing over the past few months since she’d gone into retirement.

They had an early lunch at their favorite Chinese restaurant.  Then coffee at their favorite café.  The sun of course had gone down, and a chill set in, so they went home.

Their good friends John and Carol dropped by.  Marion made some pop corn and they pulled out a bottle of Chardonnay.  Then they decided to watch “Midnight in Paris” by Woody Allen.  She noticed that it had begun to snow.  She loved to look at the snow fall.

At midnight their friends went home and they went to bed, and made love.

Marion woke up with a start!  What a dream!

The angel of death smiled at her: “No Marion, not this time.  Did you enjoy your last 24 hours on Earth?”

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WDBWP Wednesday Story Prompt: if you had just 24 hours left….I’ve also chosen to use Chèvrefeuille’s gift by Adrian Von Ziegler to inspire this piece.

WDBWP-Poetry Prompt #003: Dream States

From Sahm at WDBWP

Prompt: We all have dreams, though sometimes they’re hard to remember.

  This week, pay close attention to your dreams.  If you remember to do so, upon waking, attempt to write a poem about your dream (unless it’s too personal, that is).  Use whatever form you wish, whether it be the Ghazal, Sonnet, Haiku, or what have you.  As an optional step, try interpreting your dream and telling us what you believe it means.

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Free Verse

 Dream City

I walk down streets
crowded people bustling
pushing all me along,  in a rush
until I find a quiet corner that leads
into the familiar alleyway I visit often
welcome small shops beckon and call
each one a familiar stall
full of my favorite products
the smells
the sounds
the very air
shimmer and tempt
then, the shops suddenly close
the streets are abandoned…

 I’m here
inside this plaza
familiar yet unknown
the buses hurry by
driven by ghosts
in this world
only wind
no voices
no song
no one
until
I enter…

a wide open thoroughfare
sun shines and beckons me
into a city park
flowers all in bloom
peaceful and perfumed
young people holding hands
old people feeding pigeons
I hear the crunch of gravel
a plane flies overhead
sitting on a bench
I see your face
and I
smile before I awaken
back to my everyday world

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N.B. This is just three variations of a dream I often have…there’s another one that I dream often it’s about too, it takes place in an old abandoned house full of treasures to be discovered in each room.  Who knows maybe I’ll write about it someday both the city and the house leave me with a feeling of serenity. The only them is that while I’m dreaming I’m pretty much aware that they are dreams and I ask myself where I’ve seen the places before.  Hope there are no Freudians or Jungians among my readers!

I thought it was cool that the three verses formed figures for me today…a lamp, a key hole and a vase!

Wednesday Short Story Prompt #21 – Gender Bender

Fairy Tale

Beaux and Bête

In the fair city of Aix-en-Provence lived a widow.  She’s taken over her dead husband’s import-export business and had turned it into a highly quoted enterprise which took her around the world searching out ever new products, her name was Marie Antoinette Regard.

She had three sons. Ernest, Darius and Beaux.

Before leaving on a business trip to Japan, Marie Antoinette asked her sons if there might be anything special she could bring them as a souvenir.

Ernest whose interest ran into informatics, requested one of the latest Sony ™ computers, Darius whose special interest was the art of war, requested a katana and Beaux who was a poet requested a photograph of a white rose with a Japanese maple in the background.

Marie Antoinette was very busy, so whilst she was about with different company CEOs she sent her personal assistant to pick-up the katana and the computer, but forgot to mention the photograph.  When she got back to France, she realized that she’d forgotten her youngest son’s request when  passing near a great estate with a beautiful botanical garden.  She saw a white rose next to a Japanese maple!

She had her chauffeur stop her limo and jumped out of the car with her digital camera in hand, slipped through the gate and started taking photographs.  Not 5 minutes after she’d slipped through the gates, then two doberman pinschers and 3 armed guards surrounded her and took her into the Estate Manor.

She was lead to a small room, very much like a cloister’s visiting area with a draped grating along one wall.

“Who might you be and why have you invaded my property?” said a woman’s voice.

“I’m Marie Antoinette Regard.  I know I should have asked, but all I wanted to do was take a photograph of your white rose-bush near that lovely Japanese maple tree.  I’m afraid I promised my youngest son that I would bring him just such a photo, but I forgot to do so when I was in Japan due to all my important business conferences.” she was nearly rambling in her anxiety.

“Why does he want the photograph?”

“Well, he’s a poet, I suppose he either wants to turn it into a hoiga, I think he calls them or maybe inspire himself to write a choke you.”

“That’s Haiga and Choka.  I can see you take no interest at all in what this son does.  I’ll tell you what.  Unless you want to go to prison for breaking and entering, you will send your son to live here in my Manor house for one year.  He will be my personal assistant and will live here on the grounds.”

Now, the forbidding woman behind the grate really put the fear of God into Marie Antoinette.  One thing her business couldn’t afford was a scandal!  So, she said she’d send her son along the next day to take up his new post.

When she got home, she told her son’s of her terrible adventure upon her return to France.

“Where did you say the Manor was Mummy dear?” Ernest asked.

“About 20 kilometers before entering Aix, you know that great estate with the botanical gardens.” she replied.

“Shit!  That’s Bête Davis’ place, you know the hermit heiress Elizabeth Davis.  No one knows what she looks like, but she’s the head of about the most ruthless multi-national on earth!” Darius commented with admiration in his voice.

“Well it doesn’t matter, I’ll go, I don’t want Mom arrested!” Beaux said, though he wasn’t the office worker sort.

Beaux and his mother went to the Estate next morning.  She was refused admittance but he was led into the same small room his mother had been in the day before.

“You’re Marie Antoinette’s son, what’s your name?” the woman’s voice asked.

“I’m Beaux Regard, and I must warn you, I’m a poet and not at all good at managerial or office work.”

“You’re  my special personal assistant.  Your job will be to write all the poetry or anything else you like. During our evening meals and after dinner we will speak about what you’ve written.  You have the full run of the grounds, except for the East wing, which are my personal living quarters, and you can’t leave the grounds without my permission, is that clear?”

“Uhm, yes, of course.”

“Good, see you at dinner.”

The days turned into weeks and the weeks months.  Beaux was actually very happy.  He wrote all day and in the evenings would read his work to Bête.  Sometimes she would critique him, at others she’d share her own efforts, at others still they would pass the evening in a Renga contest.  He began to fall in love with her, although he had never actually seen her as she always wore a heavy veil.

Back at home, things were not going so well.  His brothers had married twin Japanese sisters, heiresses to a powerful multi-national.  However, Marie Antoinette had taken ill and had not been able to follow the business and her sons did not have her talents.  Eventually, the Japanese Baron bought Marie Antoinette out of her business for a pittance, giving her sons a job in the company for his daughters’ sake.

On her death-bed, Marie Antoinette requested to see Beaux one last time.  So they called for him and he spoke to Bête, who gave him permission to leave with the qualification that he’d be back in not more than three days, or if he had to prolong his stay, he would call her with the special cel phone that she gave him.

“I will surely pine away without you my dearest personal assistant.  Please don’t fail me!”

“Never worry my dearest Bête, I love you dearly and would never betray you.”

When he returned home in a chauffeur driven Mercedes sports car, dressed in a pair of 500€ jeans and sweatshirt sporting Gucci shoes, his brothers began to think that maybe they could move in on Beaux’s good fortune and free themselves from their father-in-law’s tyranny.

Beaux went directly to the hospital after his driver left him at his family home.  There he reassured his mother that he was really very happy.  She could pass on in peace as she’d been feeling really guilty about abandoning him the way she had, all for her business interests.

The next day there was the reading of the will, and of course, their mother hadn’t much to leave them.  The family home was divided up between the two older brothers and Beaux was given the family library.  Beaux, decided that he would leave the next morning, but his brothers persuaded him to stay another day.

“Hell man, we haven’t seen you in months!” they’d said.

He woke up the next morning to find that he’d been locked in his room and his cel phone stolen!

The Mercedes came to fetch him, but the brothers sent the driver on his way saying that Beaux wanted 100.000€ to return to the Estate or he would stay on with his own family.

Bête, devastated, took to her rooms in a dark depression.

Meanwhile, Beaux after a couple of days, was able to find a way to escape.  He climbed down from his the bedroom window using his bed sheets as an impromptu rope. Then he hitch-hiked the 20 kilometers back to the Estate.

The guards who recognized him, immediately allowed him on the grounds, calling their mistress to tell her that he had returned.

She ran down the stairs to meet him and he saw her for the first time without her veil.  She was beautiful, with long black hair and almost purple eyes.

She finally confided in him, that the board of administrators of the multi-national that her family had left her, had held her money in trust until three days before when she’d turned 22.  Now she was at last free of them, and had decided to sell the business off, breaking up the company so it could no longer function as a monolithic business monster.  She’d always been cowled by the board, but now she had the knife by the handle and had decided to use it.

They married a short time later.  Beaux and Bette, which was of course her real name, bailed out Beaux’s brothers and set them up in business in Canada.  Ernest with his own software house and Darius with his own franchise of Kendo gyms and a line of special martial arts weapons.

She sold off most of the subsidiary companies effectively breaking up the multinational.  They then bought themselves a Castle in Spain near the coastal village and a sailboat.  She retired from the business world forever, co-authoring books and poetry with Beaux which became best sellers throughout the globe.

Oh, and they lived happily ever after.

Written for Lilith at WDBWP

Take any fairy tale and bend all the characters, NOT just the main protagonist and antagonist, to their opposite gender. You can even use nursery rhymes if you wish, and especially anything from the Grimm brothers.

Make it your own, but still recognizable as the story from which it is derived, Most of all though have fun, have faith, and follow your inspiration!!